Browse content similar to Nellie the Truffle Hunter. Check below for episodes and series from the same categories and more!
Welcome to Animals At Work, the show that brings you animals at work.
Around the world, there are millions of animals that have jobs.
This is the show that brings you the most extraordinary, bizarre
and unusual animals at work.
A spaniel who might have a champion's nose
for truffle hunting...
I'm trying to make her sit. Nellie, sit.
..an extreme doggy athlete
about to take on his next adventure challenge...
..and a swimming sports star who's practising
to be the smartest fish in the world.
Enjoy the show.
We've caught a whiff of one animal at work
who is certainly not to be sniffed at.
I knew I should have had a bath this morning.
We're joining a snooping spaniel at the UK's first Truffle Championships.
We're off to Wiltshire in England.
In the heart of rural Wiltshire, there's a rare breed of dog
on a gourmet mission.
This special Sussex spaniel has an exceptional job.
In just two months she's going to be taking part
in the first ever British Truffle Hunting Championships.
One of the most expensive foods money can buy.
Sit, sit. Obey.
I'm Sophie, I'm 13 years old and I'm Nellie's handler
and I'm training her to be a truffle hunter.
Basically she has to go around woods, good girl,
and sniff out these, which are truffles,
and tell us where they are, so we can dig them out,
cos they're valuable.
Truffles are referred to as "diamonds of the kitchen."
They grow in the earth to about the size of a ping-pong ball.
They are massively popular, massively strong tasting
and massively expensive.
A kilo of truffles can cost £200.
I felt pretty stupid
when I found out that they're not just chocolates.
At home with the rest of her clan, Nellie is a bit of a let down.
She's not the shining star at home.
I'm trying to make her sit.
How do you make them sit?
Nellie lives alongside six brothers and sisters
who are renowned for their beauty in the dog show world.
Meet Crufts contenders Onslow, Betty, Thelma, Sybil, Dizzy and Fred.
Nellie hasn't always been the runt of the litter.
When she was born she was named after Nellie the elephant
because she was the heaviest pup in the pack.
# Off she went with a trumpety-trump,
# Trump, trump, trump! #
But she grew up to be the smallest.
But that's not the only reason
Nellie hasn't been invited to the family pretty party.
Nellie's not doing showing because she has two crooked teeth.
These two teeth here.
Taking part in the truffle hunting championships
is Nellie's chance to show her family that she is just as good as them -
just a little bit different.
It's important that she has a job and she gets to do this.
This is her chance to shine.
Being a truffle hunter should be the ideal job for her.
Like all spaniels, Nellie is good with people and loves being busy.
But her extra special talent is in her nose.
Whenever we take her around she's always sniffing.
She sniffs a lot, more than they usually do.
Noses are to spaniels like eyes are to humans.
They use them to smell everything.
Usually truffle hunting in open ground
is carried out by specially trained dogs,
but Nellie is brand new to the game.
With only eight weeks until the championship,
she's got a lot of learning to do.
To get Nellie in fine snuffling truffling form,
Sophie is taking her to a truffle hunting expert.
They will go on a crash training course that will teach Nellie
to divert her attention away from other smells
and towards the goal - the truffle!
I'm putting all my trust in Nellie.
I'm not sure how stiff the competition will be,
but it will probably be quite stiff.
We have quite high expectations of her, really.
Truffle hunting is going to be, like, her calling.
From sniffing to surfing, we're off to Cornwall.
In the sand and surf of coastal Cornwall,
lives a 15lb adventure fanatic.
Meet Part Ex, a Jack Russell Terrier who lives life on the edge.
Part Ex holds the Guinness world record for most extreme sports dog.
With his adventure buddy JP he kayaks, he rock climbs,
he surfs, and he cliff-jumps!
That's right. Ciff-jumps.
Whenever we go near moving water, Part Ex gets really, really excited.
I think what's going on in his head is "Yay! Time to go and play!"
What he tries to do, he tries to woof and bite the wave,
and as you can see on the way out, he'll just try and yap, bite,
grab the wave and it's impossible, you know, he can't grab the wave.
He often ends up swallowing quite a bit.
Even JP was surprised when he found out
that his puppy pal was an enthusiastic natural at watersports.
Four or five years ago I was being filmed surfing
and Part Ex was along for the ride and going up and down the beach.
I happened to drag my board out behind me,
thinking that Part Ex was safe on the beach.
I turned around and there he was on the board on all fours,
ready to play, so I thought "Oh, I'll give this a go!"
I tried surfing in two or three times and from then on
he's been surfing with me all the time.
They think they are bigger, better, stronger, faster
than anything else around them. Even though they're really small,
they think they're bigger than any Rottweiler that's around
and they'll challenge and take on anything.
Today Part Ex is ready to make a splash
at the brand new extreme sport - waterskiing!
I've chosen waterskiing cos it's another water-related activity.
I know that he really likes that.
I'm worried about the speed of the boat
and if he jumps off or falls off while it's going really fast,
but he's tough little cookie and he always comes back for more,
so we'll just see. We'll take it at his pace.
Will this crazy, courageous athlete
be able to stay on the narrow board behind a speeding boat?
The way that we're planning to take on the waterskiing
is to first go surfing on the big board where both of us can get on
and I can see how he's doing, see if he enjoys it or not.
If he does well on that we're gonna move on to the little board
and he's gonna do it all by himself without any help from me.
MUSIC: "Wipeout" by The Surfaris
He stays on the board! Part Ex can add another sport to his name!
This dog can ski!
Part Ex seems worried about losing his board buddy.
Wait a minute - no he's loving it!
Part Ex has no trouble keeping his balance, unlike JP.
Little Part Ex has mastered the big board.
Time to take it to the next level.
The extreme doggy athlete triumphs again!
I think the next thing on Part Ex's list must be something like
parachuting tandem from a great height, or something
wild and extreme like that.
But that's work for another sunny day.
For now, Part Ex is clocking off and doing a little extreme napping.
We've been looking out for your home videos
of what animals get up to on the weekend.
Take these two racing ferrets from Kent, England.
-This is Lala.
-And this is Crystal.
Ferrets have the most fun
when they can race in a place shaped like a tunnel.
And Crystal wins by a ferrety furry nose!
Back to the super-sniffer Nellie in Wiltshire.
Nellie the Sussex spaniel is on track
for her new job as a professional truffle hunter.
So basically she has to go around woods, good girl,
and sniff out these, which are truffles.
It's been a slow start for smelling Nellie.
If she is to have any chance of winning
the British Truffle Championships
she has to put her nose to the ground for her first day of training.
She also has to prove to her family that she can live up to the breed.
I'm pretty nervous because I've never done this before.
These luscious grounds are specifically designed
for the immense task, and the dogs in training will be taught
to look for the truffle scent by expert tutor, Marion.
This exercise is more on scent recognition
and strengthening the dog's response with its indication.
For the first lesson, Marion puts some truffle oil in a cup
so that the dogs can recognize the scent.
Step one, the dog must walk and sniff.
Step two, the dog must snuffle truffle and sit.
Step three, the dog is rewarded.
So what we have to do is make sure the dog
is really, really, really motivated to find a truffle.
But Nellie slept through the lesson.
For your dog to learn anything, it needs to be awake.
Sleepy Nellie is the first dog to give it a go.
She masters walking and sniffing.
Sit. Sit. Nellie, sit.
-But sitting has always been a bit of a problem for Nellie.
Next is Gabby the King Charles spaniel, who goes off like a shot.
-Go on, Gabby.
-Come on, Gabby.
Nellie takes the opportunity to have a good think about the lessons.
-Sit. Good girl.
-That was beautiful.
After Gabby's star performance, Nellie bounces back.
Come on, Nellie! There's a good girl. Sit. Nellie, sit.
Oh, well done. Oh, she really looks pleased with herself.
It's a good comeback, but Gabby is obviously a clear rival.
Her owner gives her a pep talk. How will she respond?
Oh, that was very nice.
She's a very clever little dog.
She seems to use her nose really well and she's very enthusiastic.
Nellie's a little bit too laid back.
Nellie's proved she can sniff her way to success,
but she really needs to stay focused on the job at hand
and not spend so much time in meditation.
When we stop playing games this afternoon,
she might think that's more worthwhile.
For the second part of the training, the class are led outside.
Nellie must keep her concentration centred on the lesson or her chances
at the championship and her new job could be whiffed away.
I think she's going to do OK.
I think Nellie's, you know, she's got potential,
but she seems to have to work a lot harder than Gabby naturally does.
Marion has hidden a truffle somewhere in this two acres of land.
All the dogs have to do is sniff it out to graduate from truffle school.
Go, Nellie! Find truffles.
Can Nellie make a comeback and do it better than teacher's pet Gabby?
Truffles then. Find truffles.
Oooh! She misses it completely.
It's time to call it quits. Gabby's turn is next.
Gabby's done it again! Oh, dear, and Nellie is feeling the strain.
If she's in the competition
it's going to be very hard to compete against her, yeah.
Look, there is definitely something fishy going on here.
They've just handed me a script.
Listen to what it... Listen. I'm quoting this.
"Join us on Animals At Work as we go flipping wild under the water
"and meet a small-scale soccer star."
A fish that can play football?
Do you expect me to swallow this hook, line and sinker?
What position is he gonna play?
And we're off to Pennsylvania to meet an unexpected underwater genius.
Once upon a time in Gibsonia, a brother and sister had a problem.
Go fetch, Kendall.
-No. You go get it.
-No. You get it.
-No. You get it.
-No. You have to go get it.
They had no pet to play with.
I'm bored. This is kinda...
-I'm so bored.
-So am I.
-You get it.
-No you go get it.
At home, their father, a computer scientist,
found a fishy fix to this predicament.
Hey, Comet, how are you doing today?
Meet Comet, a two year old common goldfish who's training
to set a record as the world's smartest fish.
MUSIC: "Chelsea Dagger" by The Fratellis
We're planning on entering Comet into the Guinness Book
for world's smartest fish.
Hello, my name is Comet.
He really is curious and when you come to the tank
he'll swim up and wiggle his tail.
Well, Comet likes food and attention I think.
He's pretty playful.
The other employee in Coach Comet's fish school is his buddy, Brainiac.
Hello, I'm Brainiac. Hi, hi.
We call him Comet's sidekick.
# Wild thing... #
Brainiac is really not very smart.
-He looks like he has a big brain, but I think that's all fat.
-He's not as smart as Comet is.
The chief fish trainer rewards his four-inch employee
with positive reinforcement,
which means clever Comet gets food from the training wand
whenever he completes a trick.
I've never seen Comet not be able to do a trick.
Come on, Comet.
I'm sure if we did a really complicated trick
it would be really hard for him to learn it, but he probably could.
Comet will do fetch just like dogs do.
People don't think that fish have any intelligence whatsoever
and when you tell them that they can do tricks better than many dogs,
it just floors them.
With proper props, sporty Comet can complete nine tricks.
So the first one is basketball.
The next trick is the hoop.
After that is the tunnel,
One of the really fun ones is limbo.
Then there's slalom,
European football or soccer.
We have American football
and my personal favourite
is actually the ring trick, the fetch trick.
There has not ever been a fish that I couldn't train
to do anything, so there are a lot of myths associated with goldfish
and fish intelligence in general.
The classic one is that goldfish have only a three-second memory.
And we've clearly shown through what we've done with Comet
and our other fish that this is not the case.
Cunning Comet is training for the title of world's smartest fish
in the Guinness Book Of Records.
To win his place, he must complete all nine tricks.
Here we go, Comet! Good luck!
Trick number one is basketball.
Trick number two is hoop.
Trick number three is tunnel.
Trick number four is chimney.
Trick number five is limbo.
Trick number six is slalom.
Trick number seven is football.
Trick number eight is soccer.
The last trick, trick number nine, is fetch.
Those are the nine tricks that Comet can do
and we're pretty proud that he can do them all.
BOTH: Great job, Comet!
We've been looking out for your home videos
of what animals get up to in their spare time.
Meet Sam, a retired show donkey
who is still up to his old tricks.
# Trouble now I'm trouble y'all
# I got trouble in my town... #
This is one wonky donkey!
# Yeah, trouble now I'm trouble y'all
# I got trouble in my town
# Trouble, yeah trouble now I'm trouble y'all
# I got trouble in my town... #
Onwards to Oregon to meet a model.
This luscious lumpy babe is supermodel Zelda.
Her gorgeous face is the heart of an empire worth millions of dollars.
Zelda is featured on greeting cards,
collectibles and stationery in her zany outfits to spread positivity.
She is happy with who she is, and she has turned a disadvantage
to an advantage which is a great wisdom in and of itself.
Who would think that, you know, a fat little podgy chick like Zelda
could become a supermodel?
She lets us sort of laugh at ourselves
and feel a little better about not being perfect.
MUSIC: "Don't Cha" by Cee-Lo, Sir Mix-a-Lot and Busta Rhymes
Plus-size model Zelda has to keep her figure photo-shoot ready
because there's always the competition to consider.
Zelda's weight is a constant concern for us.
Tomorrow we're starting the swimsuit calendar
which I'm most excited about.
I've gone all over and found all sorts of colourful bikinis.
The only problem that we may have is, will they fit?
Zelda the multi-millionaire shares her luxurious mansion
with her agent Carol and another Zelda!
You're gonna really love this one, baby, cos you get to be Cleopatra.
When we got Baby, it was as a companion for Zelda.
And, Zelda, you're Anthony.
It was also a look-alike because we knew down the road
that Zelda would retire and so we were looking for a look-alike
who could be her understudy.
Come on, come on, Zelda. Will you turn around?
You're really sort of grumpy, aren't you?
When we first got Baby Zelda, Zelda was not happy at all
because Zelda thinks she is the queen,
Zelda rules and she did not have room in her heart initially
to share her space with Baby.
I think in Baby's head she wants to star.
I can see that in some of the photographs
where she takes over.
There's one where they're on a park bench and you can tell
Zelda was not happy to share the spotlight with Baby,
and Zelda hunched her shoulders and hunkered down and looked grumpy
And Baby just was on and she was just like,
"Whoa! Photograph ME because I want to be the star!"
Today, Zelda is being featured in a swimsuit shoot.
Baby is on standby in case the star has any wardrobe malfunctions.
-You think she'll still fit in that though?
Carol and photographer Shane size up Zelda's suits.
Come on, Sweetie.
Luckily, the suit fits! The camera loves this bathing beauty.
# My style can't be duplicated or recycled
# Oh! Hah!
# Let me switch up the game I drink that cognac
# Step back cos I might put it on ya
# My curves they swerve so superb My word is my word
# And I came to serve
-# We run this, we run this
-Run this, run this
We run this oh, oh... #
Baby is going to have to wait in the corner just a little longer.
Zelda is still top model.
Time for a truffle hunt.
Nellie the laid back Sussex spaniel has a job to do today.
She is starting her career as a truffle hunting hound
in the first ever British Truffle Hunting Championships.
She's been in training with handler Sophie for two months.
Today is not only about doing well in the competition,
but bringing honour to her high-achieving Crufts-winning family.
Nellie has never been a champion at anything.
I'm pretty nervous. Nellie's feeling... Well, she's shaking.
She's the only Sussex spaniel here I think, so that's pretty special.
Nellie's also representing the Sussex spaniel population of Great Britain.
If she can pull off a good performance in the championships,
then she'll have earned the respect of her family as well.
She's different to all the others cos this isn't like a dog show,
so she's actually got a job to do - something that's an occupation.
I think she's had it quite easy until now,
but I think she's going to be thrown into the deep end.
Nellie might be the one who has to perform on cue,
but this is also unknown territory for Sophie.
I have no idea what's gonna happen. Just go with the flow.
She's trying to get ahead by sniffing out any rivals.
Apart from some obvious distractions,
it's up in the air how Nellie will react in a competition.
I'm not actually sure how she's gonna do today
because she's either focused and really wants to do well,
or she's not doing anything.
Just "Oh, I can't be bothered to do this."
It's like an on and off switch. She's either off or on.
The anxious competitors wait while the course is prepared.
Three expensive truffles are buried in the ground
for the hopeful snufflers to find.
The first contender starts the sniffing.
Nervous Nellie and Sophie wait for their turn to truffle.
Next into ring one we have Sophie.
It's the moment of truth.
Will Nellie snuffle her way to doggy glory?
It's time to meet the judge.
-Do come in. Don't worry, just take your time.
-The panel start their stopwatches.
Nellie's not in the zone. Sophie is hoping for a very quick turnaround.
Go, Nellie. Find truffles. You stupid dog!
Suddenly Nellie flips on her switch and springs into action,
scouting the area for the scent of truffles.
There's no stopping her and she is determined
to find that elusive odour.
She found her first truffle!
Yes, she's found it. Well done.
She's indicating that she's found the truffle by sitting.
Onto the next truffle!
Nellie has snuffled the second truffle!
-Very nice handling.
Time to track the last truffle!
If Nellie is a successful sniffer,
she has a chance at the truffle title.
Nellie has found all three truffles
in speedy spaniel time!
Excellent handling. Very calm handling
and the dog certainly knows her nose work. Beautiful handling.
She switched on, on her own. Whether you want her to or not
she'll only switch on if she wants to.
She seems to switch on at the right moment.
Nellie pulled all her training out of her hat
for the competition and is given a very respectable eighth place,
out of 25 experienced truffle hunting hounds.
But for Nellie, winning the respect of her family is the real prize.
She's represented their breed in a national championship
and come out smelling of success.
Her future is definitely in truffle hunting
cos she's a natural at it.
You are a truffling snuffling champion!
Hey, Pepper, I got some more jokes. Listen.
What dogs are good with children?
That's a really, really good one.
Hey, they weren't that bad!
Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd
E-mail [email protected]